Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Word Count Wednesday With Gesture Crutches & Structural Self-Editing

Well, this has been a tough week for my word count.  I did add just over a thousand words, but that's it. Sigh.  I need to remember to be happy with any additions. I am moving forward, slowly but surely!

Part of what is holding me back is that I'm editing as I go along, which I know is a no-no, but I can't seem to help myself this time around.  I've been working hard on getting rid of my gesture crutches, doing a structural self-edit with a side of digging deep into my characters' emotions.

There was an amazing class on gesture crutches and one on structural self-editing given at the Storymakers conference last week by Jordan McCollum.  Both of the classes were packed with people standing or sitting on the floor.  She has graciously put up notes and part of her presentation on gesture crutches here  Her presentation and notes on structural self-editing can be found here  Definitely well worth your time.  (I should know, because those are what I'm focusing on right now! Great stuff!)

How did you do this week?


Debra Erfert said...

Aaahhh! Thank you for putting up a like to Jordan's class. I missed going to the conference, but now I'll get to read notes from at least one of the classes. And I know I use too many gesture crutches.

Jon Spell said...

Can you explain what a "gesture crutch" is, or an example? Is it a telling not showing thing?, he said using air quotes.

Debra Erfert said...

I didn't get a chance to write on my WIP this week. *sigh* Word count zero!

Julie Coulter Bellon said...

Jon, here is Jordan's definition of a gesture crutch: Smiling, nodding, laughing, sighing, frowning—they’re all the little gestures we use every day to convey meaning, and they can creep into every page of our writing. These overused actions quickly become flat clichés, sapping your story’s power. Come learn how to find these common “gesture crutches,” discover new strategies to fix them, and use the smallest gestures to personalize your characters.

Debra, I didn't go either, so I was glad Jordan put up the presentation! And boo on the word count. We'll do better this week, right? :)